Messiah’s Theatre Department begins their run of “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs as Performed by TJ Barker’s Troupe of Theatricals” Thursday, March 4.

This production is not your typical Snow White story. In this version, a travelling group of performers face many challenges while trying to put on this well known fairytale. Missed trains and food poisoning leave them short five dwarfs and they have to get creative.

“It is Snow White, we see the story with the dwarfs, but we also see the story of this troupe of theatrical performers who are solving the problem in order to put on the production,” Daniel Inouye, theatre professor and director of the show, said. “It’s like a play within a play.”

A vital component of the production was the use of musical instruments. Many actors played the piano, guitar, saxophone, drums and even plastic water bottles backstage. The narration and musical sound effects gave the illusion of going on a journey through an animated children’s show.

Goofy and full of puns, this production is geared to both kids and adults. The joy of the actors is contagious to audience members of any age.

“When I was thinking about shows to do, I wanted to choose something that was going to provide our community with an opportunity to smile and laugh,” Inouye said. “I feel like in light of everything that’s happening, we just needed a moment to have some joy.”

From the acting to the set design, Messiah’s version of Snow White certainly brightens up the night. Bold patterned costumes paired with a magical medieval set will instantly bring viewers back to childhood fairy tales.

Another surprise element of this unique retelling of Snow White are puppets. Many characters had a puppet on their arm, speaking for them while they wore a mask.

“The dwarf puppets are by far my favorite part,” Inouye said, “and watching how all of the actors had to adjust to learning how to use puppets and tell stories with them to make the puppets real.”

Fun puppets are not the only reason to tune into the livestream. The entertaining plot and characters brought to life by Messiah’s theatre students are perfect for keeping more mature audience members engaged.

Consider the funny minstrel man who may or may not be the prince, the acrobatics and dancing performed by the dwarfs or the poor cat who gets dropped into the Evil Queen’s cauldron.

Does Snow White wake up in the end? Does the prince kiss her with a mask on? There is only one way to find out.

Humorous and lighthearted, “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs as Performed by TJ Barker’s Troupe of Theatricals” is not one to miss.

“It’s a show designed for laughter and everybody loves puppets, everyone loves humor and the chance to laugh, especially nowadays,” Inouye said. “Take the opportunity to just try to forget some of our other problems and enjoy a fun story that you’re probably familiar with told in a unique and fun way.”

Support local artists by tuning into Snow White via livestream March 4-6 and 8-10 at 7 p.m. and March 7 at 3 p.m. Free tickets are required to access the link.

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